Hey, can we chat? You, the motor vehicle fanatic who devours MotorTrend for the large-finish things. And you, way too, the retail-prepared shopper who will come to us for functional purchasing tips. You the two have tons of inquiries about the new Mercedes-Benz GLB crossover. But what you truly want to know is, only: Is it any very good?

Allow me answer just as only: Of course, it is.

The fanatic desires to know if it can be a actual Mercedes, 1 which is deserving of carrying its 3-pointed star amongst stalwarts like the GLS, GLE, and our 2018 SUV of the 12 months, the GLC. Does it push like a Mercedes, even even though it can be a entrance-wheel-push structure? In the meantime, the smart shopper desires to know if the GLB feels like a Mercedes on the inside of, if it can be a very good price, and irrespective of whether there is certainly place for all their requirements.

Of course, it does all those people matters.

These are truthful inquiries to inquire. This is only Mercedes’ next crack at a entrance-push SUV. It is really also getting a threat by mating a compact footprint with 3 rows of seats.

Let us just get the latter out of the way: The 3rd row is optional, and it can be for youngsters only. Why even offer you it, then? Due to the fact it can be a terrific promoting proposition to get your full college-operate carpool in a Mercedes SUV for a finances value. As purchasers at each and every value issue flip their eyes absent from minivans and towards SUVs, particularly luxurious types, it can be a market place phase just waiting around to be served.

Related to its immediate rivals, the Land Rover Discovery Sport and Volkswagen Tiguan, the GLB’s 3rd row is for emergencies only&#x2014so you should not count on it way too substantially. The sliding and reclining next-row seats will see significantly a lot more use, and they have lots of place for grown ups, practically grownup children, and motor vehicle-seat-certain youngsters alike. The entrance seats, as normally, will get the most significant exercise session, and they are up for it, remaining relaxed soon after 400-additionally miles on the street (in contrast to the way too-slim, way too-organization variations in the mechanically very similar CLA-Course sedan).

If you are cross-purchasing the CLA- or A-Course sedans, you may locate the GLB’s ahead cabin in any other case acquainted. The instrument panel and heart stack are doppelg&#xE4ngers, and you may recognize quite a few of the exact same capabilities.

Concur to a large ample value at the supplier, and you can get a mixture of adaptive cruise manage, highly developed lane retaining, and navigation information that features practically as very well as Tesla‘s Navigate on Autopilot. Activate cruise, and it will gradual the car or truck for corners, manage cease-and-go website traffic, and modify lanes when you activate a flip sign. It’s going to even exhibit a ahead-hunting video clip feed on the infotainment display and overlaid reminder arrows pointing you into the upcoming waypoint (albeit a little bit late in the procedure).

Unfortunately, the cumbersome consumer interface is multilayered and tough to use. The infotainment display, at minimum, is contact delicate, but the touchpad controllers on the heart console and the steering wheel seldom recognize your inputs.

When underway, the GLB rides and drives like a tall sedan, hugging the floor but offering you an elevated check out of the street. The suspension rides easily though retaining the entire body fairly flat in a curve so no 1 will get thrown all over. The steering is responsive and has a awesome excess weight to it with no becoming way too weighty. In the same way, the brakes offer you lots of halting ability if you will need it, but they usually are not grabby, so it can be simple to cease effortlessly.

Its all-wheel-push technique, need to you select to invest in it, is invisible to the driver when engaged, which normally only takes place if a entrance wheel loses traction. (You can manually interact it with the Off-Highway driving method.) Having said that, the minimum floor clearance benefit about a sedan indicates it can be a SUV in title only&#x2014you should not hassle likely off-pavement for entertaining.

The engine’s 221 horsepower is a lot more than enough. With a pair of grown ups on board, the GLB 250 will not really feel strained acquiring up to pace when merging with interstate website traffic. Give credit rating to the new 8-pace twin-clutch automated transmission, which never ever has a stumble when effortlessly buying the suitable equipment. In contrast to the CLA’s 7-pace, the GLB’s transmission is a revelation.

The GLB is enable down by the inside sounds stage, notably tire and wind sounds on the freeway, which is abnormal for a car or truck carrying a Mercedes badge. Increasing your voice to be read in a German motor vehicle? Unacceptable.

The very good information is Mercedes failed to enable the accountants value this detail. You would have to examine practically each and every box on a GLB to leading $50K. But dial again on the about-the-leading possibilities, and you have amazing tech and luxurious for the value of a loaded mainstream-brand name compact SUV. With a lot more consumers prioritizing panache about ability, the GLB tends to make a great deal of perception.

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